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Mortgage Broker Running for Office

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A West Virginia mortgage broker is running for political office. While he supports members of his profession, he had some harsh words to say about servicers and the appraisal code.

Eric Carper has announced his candidacy for Berkeley County Council.

In addition to being a builder and a developer, the Republican candidate is also a mortgage broker. Promotional statements say his “business continues to grow and flourish even in these times.”

Carper told MortgageDaily.com in a statement that his company, Power Mortgage and Financial Solutions Inc., has six top-producing loan officers and two support staff members. The Martinsburg, W.V., firm closes around 100 loans a year, and originations totaled around $55 million during the past three years.

Mortgage brokering was the catalyst for his entry into politics.

The West Virginia native said brokers have been unfairly blamed for the economy’s collapse despite that they helped generate record-breaking spending and all-time high home-ownership levels. He explained that it was politicians who “deserve the credit for the spike in this economy” as it relates to the mortgage industry.

photo of Eric Carper
campaign photo of Eric Carper

“It was their programs that enabled so many people to afford home ownership, Carper said. “We didn’t control the programs — all time low rate, loose underwriting guidelines, stated-income programs, etc.

“I mean … you can’t put a kid in a candy shop and tell him he can’t have any.”

He also pointed to the speculative general public, which he said were advised by U.S. legislators to stop making mortgage payments before unemployment rose and the “bubble burst.”

Carper said he launched a loan modification business in early 2009, which he noted charged no up-front fees. But despite the submission of more than 200 modifications, only one was completed.

“With first-hand experiences in dealing with the lenders, I witnessed this as being the biggest fraud attempt ever,” he exclaimed. “These lenders had no interest in helping anyone.”

Carper also weighed in on the Home Valuation Code of Conduct, which he said has generated higher appraisal fees, work by inexperienced appraisers and poor valuations. He said more than 25 of his refinance applications were denied during the past year because of appraisals despite credit scores of over 680 and back-end debt-to-income ratios of less than 38 percent.

“We would have saved these families over $8,000 per month,” he reasoned. “This 8K would have found its way back into the economy.”

Frustrated with politicians who deflect all the blame for the bad while taking credit for all the good, Carper decided to take matters into his own hands on a local level.

“Times have changed and we have to change our approach to government,” Carper says on his campaign Web site. “New blood brings new voices and ideas. Government belongs to the people, not the other way around.”

Among issues he supports are stabilizing the tax structure — including the passage of the Homestead Act which will reportedly benefit senior citizens. He promotes freely speaking about political views.

He feels his “real” experiences better prepare him for political office.

“Our big government lives in a bubble,” Carper stated. “We need to get back to the common sense mentality, tell the truth and take our mistakes as lessons just like every other business owner or entrepreneur trying to fulfill some level of success.”

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